Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Original Blog Post: January 14, 2009- Shuntless

Yesterday afternoon the neurosurgeon removed Caedmon's shunt.  For whatever reason, the skin over the shunt pulled apart and never would have healed, no matter how careful we could have been.  The scab was faking us all out that it was healing.  In the emergency room, Dr. Marker gently scrubbed away the scab and we could see the shunt just sitting there, mocking us.  So, we were given the order of no food after 5 AM and that he would get in to surgery sometime during the day.  He went for almost 12 hours with no food, they finally got him into the operating room at 4:30 PM.  I can't believe how laid back he is!  He fussed maybe 3 or 4 times, about 5 minutes each time, and then settled in to sleep again.  It was so unbelievable.  I think Mommy was more stressed out about it then he was!  Anyhow, the removal took about 5 minutes, anesthesia obviously took much longer.  He started eating as soon as he was awake enough to complain about hunger and ate every two hours last night.
The reason they have not replaced the shunt is because there is very little fluid in his ventricles (in his brain) and if they put a new shunt in right now it would become clogged and they would have to start all over again.  Our hope and prayer, though unlikely, is that he will not need a new shunt put in.  They will be monitoring him closely over the next few days, watching his fluid levels and his back for any swelling, to see if his body still needs a shunt.  Today he had a CT scan that came back fine but since his surgery was just last night it's hard to tell anything from that.
They drew blood and took tissue from the area to check for infection.  So far those have come back negative.  That is a big relief as it would greatly increase the amount of time he would have to spend in the hospital.  Already we know we are looking at 10-14 days for a full antibiotic round.  Depending on when or if the shunt is placed, that time will increase. 
We are getting really used to getting around and being an advocate for Caedmon and knowing how things work in the hospital.  We're so grateful for the medical staff he has had.  They have been really awesome and we feel like partners in Caedmon's treatment.
Thank you so much for your prayers.  Monday night I think Adam and I were as close to a break down as we've come since this adventure started.  Since then we have been feeling more and more peace surrounding us and a determination that we will get through this.  Caedmon is such a healthy boy, every other thing they have tested him for is either just mild or non-existant or he's improving by leaps and bounds.  We know if we can just walk through this time we will be on the upside.  We are so grateful for your support and love surrounding us!  God is a great and good Father!

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